The Alliance for American Manufacturing filed a petition today with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) asking the agency to take action against Element Electronics over the company’s fraudulent advertising claims that some of its televisions are “Assembled in the USA.”
The bulk of those televisions are actually Made in China, meaning Element’s assembly process violates the FTC’s “Assembled in USA” standard.
AAM filed the petition to advocate for consumers who seek out American-made or assembled products. When companies such as Element mislead consumers with “red, white and blue-washing” like this, it is harmful. As AAM President Scott Paul said:
"Element is a poster child of Walmart’s recent Made in America push. Through heavy advertising consumers are led to believe that Element’s televisions contribute to bringing jobs back to the United States. We hope through our action that this façade will be exposed and that Element will take real steps to not only meet but exceed the Assembled in USA standard."
The television sets arrive at Element’s factory in the United States already packaged in their boxes (which also are Made in China). Element employees then take the TVs out of the boxes, check the screens for scratches, and use pneumatic screwdrivers to open the back of each TV and insert a memory board. After the TVs go through mechanical testing, they’re repackaged in their boxes to be sold.
And while the boxes promoting the televisions say “Assembled in USA,” AAM discovered that the back of at least one 19 inch television clearly read “Made in China.”